Can Jim Greer hold onto his job?
Our sense is Yes. But he seems to be on mighty thin ice: Republicans should have the wind at their backs this election season with President Barack Obama's poll numbers dropping and independents turning away from Democrats.
But many Florida Republicans increasingly see a significant obstacle to success: Jim Greer, the most controversial and polarizing Florida GOP chairman in decades. He has become a lightning rod for infighting, distraction and distrust, and gubernatorial candidate Bill McCollum could be a casualty.
Greer and his main benefactor, Gov. Charlie Crist, are fending off a near-mutiny among party activists, elected officials and fundraisers fed up with what they see as inept political operations, dirty campaign tactics, unfair treatment of candidates like U.S. Senate hopeful Marco Rubio, dubious fundraising practices and lavish spending.
"I sure wish Charlie Crist would pull the trigger and put in someone who is strong and competent,'' said Al Hoffman, a top GOP fundraiser from Fort Myers who thinks Greer has spent money too freely on perks like limos and private planes. "The toughest job of a CEO is to fire somebody who's close to you when he's not performing. It's the toughest job, but he has to do it. Otherwise, we'll be behind the eight ball."